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Leibish & Co
Tuesday, December 27, 2011
Santa Boosts Consumer Confidence Index
The Conference Board Consumer Confidence Index, which surged nearly 15 points in November, increased another nine points in December. The Index now stands at 64.5 (1985=100), up from 55.2 in November. The Present Situation Index increased to 46.7 from 38.3. The Expectations Index rose to 76.4 from 66.4.
The CCI is now at back to levels that it last saw in April when it was at 66 points.
“Consumers’ assessment of current business and labor market conditions improved again. Looking ahead, consumers are more optimistic that business conditions, employment prospects, and their financial situations will continue to get better,” said Lynn Franco, director of The Conference Board Consumer Research Center. “While consumers are ending the year in a somewhat more upbeat mood, it is too soon to tell if this is a rebound from earlier declines or a sustainable shift in attitudes.”
Consumers’ assessment of current conditions improved in December. Those stating business conditions are "good" increased to 16.6 percent from 13.9 percent, while those stating business conditions are "bad" declined to 33.9 percent from 38 percent. Consumers' assessment of the job market was also more positive. Those claiming jobs are "plentiful" increased to 6.7 percent from 5.6 percent, while those claiming jobs are "hard to get" decreased to 41.8 percent from 43 percent.
Consumers' short-term outlook also improved in December, the Conference Board said. The proportion of consumers expecting business conditions to improve over the next six months increased to 16.7 percent from 13.7 percent, while those expecting business conditions will worsen declined to 13.4 percent from 16.1 percent.
Consumers' outlook for the job market was also more favorable. Those anticipating more jobs in the months ahead increased to 13.3 percent from 12.4 percent, while those anticipating fewer jobs declined to 20.2 percent from 23.8 percent. The proportion of consumers expecting an increase in their incomes improved to 17.1 percent from 14.1 percent.
The monthly Consumer Confidence Survey, based on a probability-design random sample, is conducted for The Conference Board by Nielsen. The cutoff date for the preliminary results was December 14.
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I am a freelance writer and editor who covers the luxury jewelry and watch industry for several publications, including Forbes.com the Financial Times, Hong Kong-based JewelleryNetAsiaand the Italian jewelry magazine, VO+. In addition, I have my own blog covering the jewelry and watch industry, Jewelry News Network.